Pushkar is the time when Planet Jupiter,Brahaspathi in Zodiac.
There are, according to Hindu texts seven sacred rivers.
Gange cha yamuneschaiva Godavari Saraswati,
Narmada Sindhu Kaveri Jalesmin Sannithim kuru’
This is the Punyahavaachana Mantra,Prokshana Mantra.
That is this is recited to purify a place and the materials to be used for God and for occasions.
The seven rivers are,
Yet twelve rivers are also mentioned as sacred.
It is stated in Hindu texts that taking Holy Dip in these rivers would wash away one’s sins and Rituals for ancestors are to be performed here.
Special days are,
Amavasya,New Moon days,
Grahana kaala, Eclipse days,
Uttarayana, Summer Solstice, and Sraddha Thithi days of ancestors.
In addition to this,Pushkar is celebrated,once in twelve years.
The Rivers,having absorbed the Sins of those who took bath in them are purified during Pushkar.
For example,the Ganga Pushkar is calculated thus.
Pushkara schedule starts with Ganga River when Jupiter enters into Mesha Raasi which is the first sign in the zodiac. Pushkara schedule for a particular river will be for one year, however, the first twelve days known as Aadi Pushkara and the last twelve days known as Anthya Pushkara are held to be highly sacred.
Astrologically Jupiter (Brihaspathi) the Devaguru is the most benevolent planet symbolizing the wealth, fortune, learning, knowledge, divinity, progeny, domestic peace, auspiciousness and above all the karaka for occurrence of Pushkaram. Pushkara the Theertharaja always resides in the Kamandalu of Lord Brahma in the sanctified waters that has emerged out from the foot of Lord Sri ManNarayana. Entry of Pushkara into a particular river signifies the Pushkara festival when, all the Brahmaadi Devathas, all the Sages, all the Pithru Devathas, all the Theerthas in this Bhoomandala including Ganga (Ganges) enters into that particular river along with Brihaspathi and Pushkara. This time of their entry into a particular river is considered as highly sacred and celestial that has the power to diminish the ghastly and dreadful sins committed.
…Our ancient seers have prescribed certain austerities to be observed during Pushkara time known as Pushkara Vidhi. Most important are Pushkara Snana (taking bath), Pushkara Vaasa (staying), Pushkara Darshana, Siro Mundana (tonsuring of head), Fasting, Pushkara Pithru Karma, and Pushkara Dana (charity).
Featured image credit.
Each river is associated with a zodiac sign, and the river for each year’s festival is based on which zodiac sign the planet Jupiter(Bṛhaspati) is in at that time. There are periods when Jupiter is in retrograde motion, resulting in entry into the same Zodiac sign twice in a year. On such occasions, the second entry of Jupiter is reckoned for celebrating the first part of the festival.